Recently I got the opportunity to interview Chicago singer/songwriter Jacque Courbet. Born, Jacquil Wright, he has been singing for 8 years, and writing music for 3. Having known Jacque for about 5 years, I’ve been a big fan of his music and following his progress.
During our interview, I learned a few more facts about Jacque, and his plans for his musical career. He will debut his first self-titled project “Jacque Courbet” early this year.
Checkout the interview below!
PGawd: What is a typical day/week like for you and; how do you balance music with other obligations?
Jacque Courbet: “I definitely make sure to grind out. I start work pretty early…and in the evening and after work, I practice songs. I study a lot of artists. At all times, I’m listening to different R&B artists to kind of formulate my own style. I take a little bit of energy from here and there. I do it on an ongoing basis…if I’m in the shower, walking around, I could be writing a song, stuff like that. I’m just always incorporating time with my music and work.”
P: What do you love most about music?
J: “I like the fact that you can actually escape…you deal with a lot of stresses in your life. Instead of trying to cope with another mechanism, like drugs or alcohol, I use music. Music is my drug. I won’t have some sort of dependency on something that’s not good for me but something that I can actually [use to] build upon my talent and my creativity.”
P: I find one of the hardest things to do in any industry is to garner and maintain support. How have you been able to build a supportive following?
J: “I’ve been trying to reach out to people that’s consistent, like yourself, and just see how they gravitate to the music and just put it out there, as much as I possibly can. I also try to do events to see how people respond to my music. I get a few people that are consistent and they continue on, and sometimes they kind of fall off. I’m trying to find out what my niche is in terms of keeping that fan base. It’s kind of a challenge because people lose interest so quickly. It’s like a fast food market, they may like you one day and the next they’re feeling something else.”
P: Do you have any musical training, or are you self-taught?
J: “Musical training definitely at Aurora University, at Northern (Northern Illinois University). I was a part of a gospel choir at Northern for 2 years, [and] then I went to Aurora University, got a music scholarship and was part of chorale. So I’ve been classically trained, took vocal lessons, stuff like that. I practiced a lot too; study a lot, so it’s not necessarily natural. It’s something I had to learn.”
P: You said you started music 8 years ago. If you could give yourself advice 8 years ago, what would you tell yourself?
J: “That’s a good question. *laughing* Aw man. Number one I would say just don’t give up just keep going hard. There's times where I’m like man...“I don’t even want to do this; I’m just going to make my music and keep it to myself. I don’t want to share it with anybody.” You’re sharing a piece of yourself, but definitely, keep going. Watch out for the sheisty people, there’s a lot of snakes in the grass. And, make sure your money is right; you have to have money to pay for studio time. It makes a huge difference in terms of quality. I’ve been in several different studios based on budgeting….Another thing I would say to myself is not to be so introverted, because I’m an introvert. I’m getting more extroverted over time. Be more outgoing, be able to speak to people, and definitely try to network more.”
P: Where do you see your musical career going?
J: “I want to go in the route of being a song writer…I definitely want to be an artist, independent artist. Record labels wouldn’t be the thing I want to go after. If anything I want to do a joint venture-ship and build my fan base, or be behind the scenes and be a song writer or do both. Being a headliner, things of that nature is cool, but I just want to make music that’s timeless, that people will always appreciate.”
P: Some people may take this question negatively, but how do you respond if ever asked about a “plan b”?
J: “I feel like it’s always good to have a “plan b” because music isn’t always guaranteed. You can always still do it and love it, when I go to the booth…it’s like going to Disney World or something. I’m able to escape, have a good time for those few hours. My “plan b” is working in terms of managerial and building up my resume, I feel like there is always a job in management. Let me get my management experience while I’m still doing my music.”
P: Where do you see yourself in 5 years?
J: “Realistically, I see myself with a Grammy. I want a Grammy, at least nominated for a Grammy. There’s so many ways to get it, you could be a part of a team that wrote a song and get a nomination for a Grammy. Anything that could take fruition that way, allow me to get to that point, that’s what I want. I want a Grammy. The money sounds great, but it’s like a Super Bowl trophy, when you get a Grammy it’s like “man, I worked this hard and finally get some recognition.” I only need just one. I’ll be so elated. I've done all types of stuff, been in dirty basements and what not, made all types of sacrifices and I got a Grammy. It would be fly.”
Thanks again to Jacque Courbet for sitting down & chopping it up with me!
Jacque Courbet's music can be found on iTunes, SoundCloud, and Spotify! (All info listed below.)
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